Tullow updates exploration offshore Suriname, Guyana

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(Offshore) Tullow Oil says a rig, reportedly the drillship Noble Bob Douglas, has been secured for a well this fall on the 500 MMbbl-plus Araku prospect offshore Suriname.

Araku is a large structural trap which has been de-risked by results of a 3D seismic survey acquired in 2015.

Elsewhere in Suriname, Tullow has agreed to a 20% farm-down of block 47 to Ratio Exploration, subject to various government approvals.

Nearby in Guyanese waters, up-dip of the Liza discovery, Tullow is co-financing a 4,000-sq km (1,544-sq mi) 3D seismic survey that started in early May, while a 2,500-sq km (965-sq mi) 3D survey over the adjacent and contiguous Orinduik license got under way earlier this month.

Tullow working up drilling prospects offshore Guyana 

In Ghana, the company and its partners continue to work with the government to update their plan for the offshore Jubilee full field development, which they have refined to cut capital costs given current oil prices.

They expect to re-submit the plan with approval following later in the year, to allow drilling to begin in 2018. A 4D seismic survey over the area during 1Q should help optimize the location of the wells and assist ongoing reservoir management.

As for the nearby offshore TEN project, a final commissioning capacity test and facility blowdown last month showed that the FPSO can operate at its design capacity of 80,000 b/d or higher, with a recent 24-hr test conducted at 100,000 b/d.

However, testing brought to light an issue with the flaring system, with a 10-day shutdown needed for repairs. The TEN gas manifold has been installed and commissioned and a gas export trial completed to Ghana National Petroleum Corp.’s facilities.

The partners are progressing a rig tender process to allow a resumption of drilling of the remaining TEN wells around the end of the year, subject to the outcome of the ITLOS decision on the maritime boundary between Ghana and Côte d’Ivoire.

Completion of these wells should allow the TEN fields to increase daily production to the FPSO’s design capacity of 80,000 b/d.

Off Mauritania, a 600-sq km (231-sq mi) 3D survey has finished over Tullow’s block C18, and another 3D survey will start in September over block C, covering shallow-water plays.